#MobileforGood: The Charities Using Technology to Tackle Domestic Violence
The Charities Using Tech to Tackle Domestic Violence
Global estimates published by WHO indicate that around 1 in 3 women worldwide has experienced either physical or sexual violence in their lifetime (WHO, 2021). Although the incidence of domestic violence varies from place to place, underreporting is a major concern within communities and the organisations that support them.
Difficulty in tracking the incidence of domestic violence and accessing safe means to report are some of the major barriers faced by victims. To encourage reporting and ensure prosecution of perpetrators, mobile technology developers and charities have worked in partnership to create solutions that use technology to influence positive social change. Here are some of the innovators behind them:
Bright Sky (United Kingdom)
Hestia, a London-based domestic abuse charity have partnered with Vodafone to create an app after finding 1 in 3 people in the UK would not know how to help a friend or family member who was a victim of domestic abuse.
This app enables users to locate their nearest support centre by searching their postcode or current location. Designed to log incidents of domestic abuse without any content being saved on the device itself, the app also enables users to record incidents in a safe manner in a secure journal tool, using a text, audio, video or photo function. You can check out the project here.
iMatter was created by a domestic abuse survivor to empower young people and help them understand the warning signs of abusive and controlling relationships. Its aim is to educate people about the different forms of domestic violence and increase awareness of support services available. The interactive iMatter mobile app is also aimed at promoting self-esteem and conversations between young people about healthy relationship behaviour and support them to make safe choices. You can check out the project here.
VictimsVoice (United States)
Launched in June of 2019, VictimsVoice not only allows victims of domestic violence to report incidents through secure channels but the app also allows them to document and record evidence if the victim would like to pursue legal action against the perpetrator. This app was specifically designed to link in with police and social work services, making it possible to record an incident in just a few taps.
Users can upload and store securely vital information such as doctor’s reports, police reports or photos without storing the files locally anywhere on a phone. You can find out more details about the app here.
EasyRescue was developed as a response to research showing that 4 in 10 women in Turkey have experienced intimate partner violence, with 89% of women never reporting the abuse (Vodafone Group Foundation, 2020). Furthermore, during the coronavirus pandemic, domestic violence in Turkey increased by 38%, so local organisations partnered with Vodafone to build in public safety and a secure method of reporting from mobile devices. The app includes innovative features such as shaking your phone to send to your location, one-click calling to the emergency services and using GPS to identify local support services. Check out the project here.
The app also includes a feature called My Seatmate which can share the route of their journey with trusted people and they will be informed immediately if any unexpected changes in route occur.
These innovative apps demonstrate the power of mobile for good – and how technology can help build stronger and safer communities. Check out our #MobileForGood blog series for more stories about organisations delivering a big impact in communities around the world.
At GoodCall, we can support your charity to deliver impact through mobile technology. We provide bespoke advice to help you make the most of your mobiles. Get in touch with us now via our contact form or call Elaine on 07535 396 882.